South Africa


Dudu Myeni slapped with R120,000 fine or two years in jail after revealing identity of protected Zondo witness

Dudu Myeni slapped with R120,000 fine or two years in jail after revealing identity of protected Zondo witness
Former SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni testifiying over Zoom at the State Capture Commission. (Photo: Greg Nicolson)

Sentencing was handed down to the former chair for revealing the identity of a protected witness — Mr X — during the State Capture Commission of Inquiry.

The sentence meted out on Wednesday in the Johannesburg Magistrates’ Court follows a plea and sentencing agreement Myeni entered with the state. The agreement was read into the record by her lawyer Nqabayethu Buthelezi.

Myeni pleaded guilty to a charge of obstruction of justice for her actions. The court ordered that half of the fine or two years’ imprisonment be suspended for five years. The first R30,000 has to be paid immediately and the remainder must be settled on or before 29 August.

Myeni revealed the identity of the protected witness known as — Mr X — despite a strict order from commission chairperson Raymond Zondo that the name be withheld.

The charge related to events that transpired during the State Capture Commission of Inquiry in November 2020. Myeni had just revealed the identity of “Mr X” — a witness implicating her in alleged dodgy deals with Mhlathuze Water Board and a housing contract from the Mpumalanga government.

Dudu Myeni plans to plead guilty to obstructing justice after naming State Capture witness Mr X

In terms of the agreement, Myeni admitted that she was fully aware of her conduct while giving testimony on 5 November 2020. Also on the day in question Myeni further admits that while testifying to the commission, she disclosed the true identity of Mr X on more than one occasion, which defeated or obstructed the administration of justice.

“Admit that she had no justification of her actions and that due to her actions the true identity of Mr X was revealed to the public in contravention of the order made by the chairperson of the commission. The accused admits that all material times she knew that her actions were wrongful, unlawful and punishable by law,” her plea and sentence agreement reads.

In mitigation of sentence, her lawyer indicated the court should take into consideration that she was a first-time offender, unemployed without any form of income, declared a delinquent director in the Pretoria high court on 28 May 2020 which has an adverse impact on her personal circumstances, has no previous conviction and is turning 60 years old in October this year.

The lawyer also told the court that Myeni has not earned a steady income since 2017 and is currently surviving on the support of her family. Buthelezi added that Myeni had shown remorse and made no attempts to evade justice which should be considered in her sentencing.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane welcoming the sentence said: “The sentence does send a strong message, especially in terms of regulations that regulate the different commissions that we normally have in the country. Miss Dudu Myeni has learned a lesson and we believe that it is also a lesson to society that once a chairperson has made an order during a commission, it is for all those that will be testifying to comply with the order.” 

In May 2020, a high court declared Myeni a delinquent director and banned her for life from holding any directorship position. She was further ordered to abandon all her directorships, including her roles as SAA chairperson, executive chairperson of the Jacob Zuma Foundation and deputy chairperson of Free State electricity distribution company Centlec. In April 2021, the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed one of her two appeals against the delinquent-for-life ruling. DM


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Rory Macnamara says:

    Should have been R1.2 million and jail. it is unbelievable that our justice system allows these types to apply Stalingrad practices, including Zuma and his bunch of crooks.
    Justice delayed is justice denied for the South African people who have had to watch this spectacle and taxpayers who keep the snouts in the trough! and then they aslo indicate standing for President of the country i.e., Mkize!

  • Johan Buys says:

    R60,000 is a joke. A thief caught stealing a laptop from a car has no stay out of jail option and gets three years. The fine will be paid for her – DoJ and SARS should look to the source of funds on this.

  • Michael Forsyth says:

    It couldn’t happen to a nicer person. What has happened to the millions she benefited from? She should ask her crony, JZ, for a handout.


    And we think our Justice System has integrity! What a joke!

  • David Burger says:

    Small price to pay for breaking our once outstanding airline!

  • Rebecca Manning says:

    I heard the broadcast -it was deliberate naming and I heard her do it twice immediately after each of the cautions. She put someones life at risk and deserves harsh punishment.

  • Hermann Funk says:

    Far too lenient. Pleading poverty is another cop out, or has she wasted all the money she stole?

  • Michael Clark says:

    R120,000 fine wow what a joke. This woman earned millions running SAA into the ground and all of a sudden she is living of charity! Really? She is treating us as fools. This pathetic punishment has sent a clear message to all government fat cats, steal away and you will never see and inside of a jail and the fine will be less than sending your child to a private school.

  • Chris 123 says:

    No problem Baba will just transfer from Dubai account. Why not jail!!!

  • virginia crawford says:

    I don’t think the sentence is heavy enough to deter others from revealing whistle blowers’ identity. I wonder what Mr X thinks and how his life has been disrupted and put at risk. The first time offender nonsense means nothing in this context: first time offences are possibly mistakes or an aberration that probably won’t happen again. A life of lawless and corrupt behaviour is a pattern that won’t change and requires a heavy penalty, including ruinous financial fines.

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